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CPU Documentation

About This Manual

The TS-7100 series of products all incorporate two PCBs connected by a high density connector. One of these PCBs contains the CPU and some basic peripherals. The second PCB is considered to be the "I/O board" which breaks out GPIO, networking, as well as other peripherals that can vary from product to product. Every product in the TS-7100 series uses the same CPU board and offers the same base features. All of the TS-7100 series products will have a full product number, for example "TS-7100-Z" is the first product in this line. This manual and all TS-7100 series product manuals will both use "TS-7100" as well as the full product number.

When the "TS-7100" name is used, this indicates that this feature is common to all products in the series. For example, soldered down eMMC flash is soldered to the CPU board. When the full product number is used, it is used to indicate that the feature or peripheral being discussed is available on that product, but not necessarily every product in the TS-7100 series.

As always, if there are any questions or concerns, please reach out to Technologic Systems' support team.


The TS-7100 is a small embedded CPU module with a 696 MHz NXP i.MX6UL CPU. The CPU module provides DDR3 RAM, soldered-down eMMC flash, 2KiB of non-volatile FRAM storage, support for a 16-bit 240x320 resistive-touch LCD display, and many more standard features.

Configuration flexibility can be achieved via the TS-7100's mated I/O board. The I/O board provides industrial-rated connectors and peripherals such as Ethernet, CAN, UARTs, WiFi and Bluetooth to expand functionality and interact with the real world.

The TS-7100-Z is the TS-7100 mated with the TS-7100-Z I/O board. The TS-7100-Z offers a DIN rail mountable enclosure with LCD and touch screen display, as well as wireless connectivity and industrial I/O. Peripherals available on the TS-7100-Z board include: soldered down WiFi with built in Bluetooth, our TS-SILO supercapacitor technology for safe shutdown upon power loss, dual 10/100 Ethernet ports, two relays, dual USB host ports, 30 VDC high-current low-side switch outputs or digital inputs, dedicated 30 VDC digital inputs, dedicated high-side switch output, 0-12 V or 4-20 mA ADC inputs, with all I/O protected by a hardware over-voltage or over-current breaker system, and a 8 V to 48 V DC input range.

Getting Started

A Linux PC is recommended for development, and will be assumed for this documentation. For users in Windows or OSX we recommend virtualizing a Linux PC. Most of our platforms run Debian and if there is no personal distribution preference this is what we recommend for ease of use.


Suggested Linux Distributions

It may be possible to develop using a Windows or OSX system, but this is not supported. Development will include accessing drives formatted for Linux and often Linux based tools.

Connect USB Console

The TS-7100 includes a USB Micro B device port; this uses a 8051 based microcontroller to create a debug/console serial interface on a host PC. The serial console is provided through this port at 115200 baud, 8n1, with no flow control. The USB serial device is a CP210x Virtual COM Port. Most operating systems have built-in support for this device. If not however, drivers are available for the device here.

Console from Linux

There are many serial terminal applications for Linux, three common used applications are 'picocom', 'screen', and 'minicom'. These examples demonstrate all three applications and assume that the serial device is "/dev/ttyUSB0" which is common for USB adapters. Be sure to replace the serial device string with that of the device on your workstation.

'picocom' is a very small and simple client.

picocom -b 115200 /dev/ttyUSB0

For Rev C hardware or newer.

picocom -b 115200 /dev/ttyACM0

'screen' is a terminal multiplexer which happens to have serial support.

screen /dev/ttyUSB0 115200

For Rev C hardware or newer.

screen /dev/ttyACM0 115200

Or a very commonly used client is 'minicom' which is quite powerful but requires some setup:

minicom -s
  • Navigate to 'serial port setup'
  • Type "a" and change location of serial device to '/dev/ttyUSB0' then hit "enter"
  • If needed, modify the settings to match this and hit "esc" when done:
     E - Bps/Par/Bits          : 115200 8N1
     F - Hardware Flow Control : No
     G - Software Flow Control : No
  • Navigate to 'Save setup as dfl', hit "enter", and then "esc"

Console from Windows

Putty is a small simple client available for download here. Open up Device Manager to determine your console port. See the putty configuration image for more details.

On boards using the Silabs CP210x driver:

Device Manager Putty Configuration

On boards using the Renesas USB CDC-ACM driver:

Device Manager 2 Putty Configuration 2

Powering Up

WARNING: Be sure to take appropriate Electrostatic Discharge (ESD) precautions. Disconnect the power source before moving, cabling, or performing any set up procedures. Inappropriate handling may cause damage to the board.

Power input to the TS-7100 is supplied via the power input connector, refer to that section for information on voltage ranges for this device.

Once power is applied to the whole device, there will be output on the debug console port. The following section of the manual provides information on getting the serial console connected.

U-Boot 2016.03-00408-gd450758c91 (Oct 10 2019 - 11:59:08 -0700)

CPU:   Freescale i.MX6UL rev1.2 at 396 MHz
Reset cause: POR
I2C:   ready
DRAM:  512 MiB
Net:   FEC0 [PRIME]
Warning: FEC0 (eth0) using random MAC address - 72:12:64:ca:3e:4a

Press Ctrl+C to abort autoboot in 1 second(s)
starting USB...
USB0:   Port not available.
USB1:   USB EHCI 1.00
scanning bus 1 for devices... 1 USB Device(s) found
       scanning usb for storage devices... 0 Storage Device(s) found
No storage devices, perhaps not 'usb start'ed..?
Booting from the eMMC ...
** File not found /boot/boot.ub **
31526 bytes read in 103 ms (298.8 KiB/s)
5253608 bytes read in 354 ms (14.2 MiB/s)
NO CHRG jumper is set, not waiting

Kernel image @ 0x80800000 [ 0x000000 - 0x500220 ]
root ## Flattened Device Tree blob at 83000000
   Booting using the fdt blob at 0x83000000
   Using Device Tree in place at 83000000, end 8300a909

Starting kernel ...
Note: The "*** Warning - bad CRC, using default environment" message can be safely ignored when the unit is first booted. This means that no environment variables have been saved to disk, and U-Boot is falling back to the default. If "env save" is run, this will save the environment to disk, and this message will go away unless there is a further issue.

The default U-Boot boot process will check for USB updates before attempting to boot from on-board eMMC. Details about the bootup process, features, and other U-Boot information can be found in the U-Boot sections.

First Linux Boot

When booting with the default settings, a shipped board will boot to the eMMC. The eMMC by default is pre-programmed with a Debian 10 Buster image. After Debian boots it will ask the user to log in with a username and password. Use "root" as the username with no password. After logging in, a password can be set with the passwd command. Note that this login will only work over the serial console. Debian SSH defaults to not only disallowing un-credentialed logins, but denying root logins altogether.

From the Linux prompt, the hardware can be tested out or application development can begin.


TS-7100 U-Boot Sections

Debian 10

Debian is a community run Linux distribution. Debian provides tens of thousands of precompiled applications and services. This distribution is known for stability and large community providing support and documentation. The installation is specific to our board, but most Debian documentation applies:

Debian 10 - Getting Started

Once installed, the default user is "root" with no password.

This image can be written to a USB drive, or to the eMMC. For development, a USB thumbdrive will be simplest. If a bootable USB drive is connected this will take priority over other boot media. Plug in a USB drive and check the last output from "dmesg" to get the USB disk. For example, this may be /dev/sdc.

# Erase all older partitions
sudo sgdisk --zap-all /dev/sdc
# Create one GPT Linux partition
sudo sgdisk -n 0:0:0 -t 0:8300 /dev/sdc
# Create a filesystem and mount
sudo mkfs.ext4 /dev/sdc1
sudo mkdir /mnt/usb/
sudo mount /dev/sdc1 /mnt/usb/
# Extract downloaded image:
sudo tar --numeric-owner -xf tsimx6ul-debian-buster-latest.tar.xz -C /mnt/usb/
sudo chmod 755 /mnt/usb/
sudo umount /mnt/usb/

These commands will also work while booted from a USB drive to rewrite the eMMC. Instead of /dev/sdc you would use /dev/mmcblk0, and instead of /dev/sdc1 you would use /dev/mmcblk0p1.

Debian 10 - Configuring the Network

Note: See the section on Ethernet Ports for port details specific to your TS-7100 model.


A file with the name of each network device to be configured is placed in /etc/network/interfaces.d/. The example below demonstrates configuration and use of the wired Ethernet device 'eth0'. For complete documentation, see Debian's documentation here

Some common examples are shown below.

DHCP on eth0:

cat > /etc/network/interfaces.d/eth0 <<EOF
auto eth0
allow-hotplug eth0
iface eth0 inet dhcp

Static IP on eth0:

cat > /etc/network/interfaces.d/eth0 <<EOF
auto eth0
iface eth0 inet static

The network can then be brought up with the command:

ifup eth0

Wi-Fi Client

Note: The latest image for this platform as of April 28th, 2022 has known issues with the Wi-Fi driver due to incompatibility with cfg80211 powersave modes.

If using Wi-Fi, it is strongly recommended to bring up the Wi-Fi interface, and then run iw wlan0 set power_save off to disable powersave modes.

This issue will be addressed in future images and has already been addressed in our kernel sources. We will continue to provide updates as we receive them from the Wi-Fi module manufacturer.

If connecting to a WPA/WPA2 network, a wpa_supplicant config file must first be created:

wpa_passphrase yournetwork yournetworkpassphrase > /etc/wpa_supplicant/wpa_supplicant-wlan0.conf

Create the file /lib/systemd/system/wpa_supplicant@.service with these contents

Description=WPA supplicant daemon (interface-specific version)

ExecStart=/sbin/wpa_supplicant -c/etc/wpa_supplicant/wpa_supplicant-%I.conf -i%I


Create the file /etc/systemd/network/wlan0.network with:



See the systemctl-networkd example for setting a static IP for a network interface. The wlan0.network can be configured the same way as an eth.network.

To enable all of the changes that have been made, run the following commands:

systemctl enable wpa_supplicant@wlan0
systemctl start wpa_supplicant@wlan0
systemctl restart systemd-networkd

Host a Wi-Fi Access Point

Note: The latest image for this platform as of April 28th, 2022 has known issues with the Wi-Fi driver due to incompatibility with cfg80211 powersave modes.

If using Wi-Fi, it is strongly recommended to bring up the Wi-Fi interface, and then run iw wlan0 set power_save off to disable powersave modes.

This issue will be addressed in future images and has already been addressed in our kernel sources. We will continue to provide updates as we receive them from the Wi-Fi module manufacturer.

This section will discuss setting up the WiFi device as an access point that is bridged to an ethernet port. That is, clients can connect to the AP and will be connected to the ethernet network through this network bridge. The ethernet network must provide a DHCP server; this will be passed through the bridge to WiFi client devices as they connect.

It is also possible to run a DHCP client on the platform itself. In this case the hostapd.conf file needs to be set up without bridging and a DHCP server needs to be configured. Refer to Debian's documentation for more details on DHCP server configuration.

The 'hostapd' utility is used to manage the access point of the device. This is usually installed by default, but can be installed with:

apt-get update && apt-get install hostapd -y

Note: The install process may start an unconfigured 'hostapd' process. This process must be killed before moving forward.

Modify the file "/etc/hostapd/hostapd.conf" to have the following lines:

wpa_pairwise=TKIP CCMP
Note: Refer to the kernel's hostapd documentation for more wireless configuration options.

The access point can be started and tested by hand:

hostapd /etc/hostapd/hostapd.conf

Systemd auto-start with bridge to eth0

It is possible to configure the auto-start of 'hostapd' through systemd. The configuration outlined below will set up a bridge with "eth0", meaning the Wi-Fi connection is directly connected to the ethernet network. The ethernet network is required to have a DHCP server present and active on it to assign Wi-Fi clients an IP address. This setup will allow Wi-Fi clients access to the same network as the ethernet port, and the bridge interface will allow the platform itself to access the network.

Set up hostapd

First, create the file "/etc/systemd/system/hostapd_user.service" with the following contents:

Description=Hostapd IEEE 802.11 AP

ExecStart=/usr/sbin/hostapd /etc/hostapd/hostapd.conf -P /run/hostapd.pid -B


Then enable this in systemd:

systemctl enable hostapd_user.service
systemctl enable systemd-networkd

Set up bridging

Create the following files with the listed contents.









Wi-Fi Concurrent Client / Access Point

Note: The latest image for this platform as of April 28th, 2022 has known issues with the Wi-Fi driver due to incompatibility with cfg80211 powersave modes.

If using Wi-Fi, it is strongly recommended to bring up the Wi-Fi interface, and then run iw wlan0 set power_save off to disable powersave modes.

This issue will be addressed in future images and has already been addressed in our kernel sources. We will continue to provide updates as we receive them from the Wi-Fi module manufacturer.

The Wi-Fi device on this platform supports concurrent operation of client and access point (STA and AP). Please see the "Wi-Fi Client" section above first to connect the Wi-Fi module, in STA mode, to an external AP. This demo showcases the Wi-Fi module starting its own AP mode via hostapd with a simple static IP address while also being concurrently connected to a separate AP.

The 'hostapd' utility is used to manage the access point of the device. This is usually installed by default, but can be installed with:

apt-get update && apt-get install hostapd -y

Note: The install process may start an unconfigured 'hostapd' process. This process must be killed before moving forward.

Modify the file /etc/hostapd/hostapd.conf to have the following lines:

wpa_pairwise=TKIP CCMP
Note: The channel used for AP must match the channel the STA is using! Be sure to set 'channel=...' in the above file to a proper channel number.
Note: Refer to the kernel's hostapd documentation for more wireless configuration options.

In order for the concurrent modes to work, a separate virtual wireless device must first be created. Note that hostapd.conf above lists interface=p2p0, a second interface with this name must be created:

iw wlan0 interface add p2p0 type managed

The access point can then be started and tested by hand:

hostapd /etc/hostapd/hostapd.conf &

An IP address can be set to p2p0:

ifconfig p2p0

From this point, other Wi-Fi clients can connect to the SSID YourWiFiName with the WPA2 key Somepassphrase with a static IP in the range of, and will be able to access the platform at More advanced configurations are also possible, including bridging, routing/NAT, or simply separate networks with the Wi-Fi module connecting to a network and hosting its own private network with DHCP.

Debian 10 - Installing New Software

Debian provides the apt-get system which allows management of pre-built applications. The apt tools require a network connection to the internet in order to automatically download and install new software. The update command will download a list of the current versions of pre-built packages.

apt-get update

A common example is installing Java runtime support for a system. Find the package name first with search, and then install it.

root@tsa38x:~# apt-cache search openjdk
default-jdk - Standard Java or Java compatible Development Kit
default-jdk-doc - Standard Java or Java compatible Development Kit (documentation)
default-jdk-headless - Standard Java or Java compatible Development Kit (headless)
default-jre - Standard Java or Java compatible Runtime
default-jre-headless - Standard Java or Java compatible Runtime (headless)
jtreg - Regression Test Harness for the OpenJDK platform
libreoffice - office productivity suite (metapackage)
openjdk-11-dbg - Java runtime based on OpenJDK (debugging symbols)
openjdk-11-demo - Java runtime based on OpenJDK (demos and examples)
openjdk-11-doc - OpenJDK Development Kit (JDK) documentation
openjdk-11-jdk - OpenJDK Development Kit (JDK)
openjdk-11-jdk-headless - OpenJDK Development Kit (JDK) (headless)
openjdk-11-jre - OpenJDK Java runtime, using Hotspot JIT
openjdk-11-jre-headless - OpenJDK Java runtime, using Hotspot JIT (headless)
openjdk-11-jre-zero - Alternative JVM for OpenJDK, using Zero
openjdk-11-source - OpenJDK Development Kit (JDK) source files
uwsgi-app-integration-plugins - plugins for integration of uWSGI and application
uwsgi-plugin-jvm-openjdk-11 - Java plugin for uWSGI (OpenJDK 11)
uwsgi-plugin-jwsgi-openjdk-11 - JWSGI plugin for uWSGI (OpenJDK 11)
uwsgi-plugin-ring-openjdk-11 - Closure/Ring plugin for uWSGI (OpenJDK 11)
uwsgi-plugin-servlet-openjdk-11 - JWSGI plugin for uWSGI (OpenJDK 11)
java-package - Utility for creating Java Debian packages

In this case, the wanted package will likely be the "openjdk-11-jre" package. Names of packages can be found on Debian's wiki pages or the packages site.

With the package name apt-get install can be used to install the prebuilt packages.

apt-get install openjdk-11-jre
# More than one package can be installed at a time.
apt-get install openjdk-11-jre nano vim mplayer

For more information on using apt-get refer to Debian's documentation here.

Debian 10 - Setting Up SSH

Openssh is installed in our default Debian image, but by default openssh does not permit root logins, and requires a password to be set. Additionally, a host key is required if one hasn't already been created on the target board. To allow remote root login:

sed --in-place 's/#PermitRootLogin prohibit-password/PermitRootLogin yes/' /etc/ssh/sshd_config
systemctl restart ssh.service
/bin/ls /etc/ssh/ssh_host*key >/dev/null 2>&1  || ssh-keygen -A
passwd root # Set any password

If you ssh to this system it will now support ssh as root.

Debian 10 - Starting Automatically

A systemd service can be created to start up headless applications. Create a file in /etc/systemd/system/yourapp.service

Description=Run an application on startup



If networking is a dependency add "After=network.target" in the Unit section. Once you have this file in place add it to startup with:

# Start the app on startup, but will not start it now
systemctl enable yourapp.service

# Start the app now, but doesn't change auto startup
systemctl start yourapp.service
Note: See the systemd documentation for in depth documentation on services.

Debian 10 - Cross Compiling

Debian only provides their cross compiler for their distribution. Our examples will set up a chroot for Debian to use for development. If using Debian 10 Buster directly, or through a VM, the schroot commands and debootstrap can be skipped.

First install the host system dependencies to use schroot and debootstrap:

# Ubuntu/Debian
sudo apt-get install debootstrap schroot
# Fedora
sudo dnf install debootstrap schroot
# Centos/redhat
sudo yum install debootstrap schroot

Use debootstrap to install a base Debian 10 for your host.

# Generate Debian Buster rootfs
sudo debootstrap buster /opt/chroots/buster-armdev/ http://deb.debian.org/debian

Then configure schroot to enter this rootfs. Replace "youruser" with your linux username.

sudo tee /etc/schroot/chroot.d/buster-armdev <<'EOF' >/dev/null
description=Debian Buster for ARM development

Log into this schroot and install the armhf development tools (Skip if running a native Debian Buster host):

schroot -c buster-armdev

This will change your PS1 variable to indicate that you are in the Debian root. For example:

mark@mark-desktop:~$ sudo schroot -c buster-armdev

Install Debian's development tools for armhf:

# This workaround is required for Debian Buster
rm /var/lib/dpkg/statoverride

dpkg --add-architecture armhf
apt-get update
apt-get install -y build-essential gcc-arm-linux-gnueabihf bc \
  lzop u-boot-tools libncursesw5-dev file wget 

At this point the Debian chroot is ready to compile armhf binaries. For example, create a hello world in your home folder at ~/Documents/hello.c

#include <stdio.h>
int main(){
    printf("Hello World\n");

To compile this, you can enter the schroot as a normal user:

schroot -c buster-armdev

Keep in mind that when this is run as a normal user it does not modify your prompt. This will look like any other prompt, but will use your Debian applications instead. You can verify this is Debian with:

mark@mark-desktop:~/Documents$ cat /etc/issue
Debian GNU/Linux 10 \n \l

While logged into this schroot, run:

arm-linux-gnueabihf-gcc hello.c -o hello

From here you can check "file hello" to verify the binary type:

mark@mark-desktop:~/Documents$ file hello
hello: ELF 32-bit LSB pie executable, ARM, EABI5 version 1 (SYSV), dynamically linked, interpreter /lib/ld-linux-armhf.so.3, for GNU/Linux 3.2.0, BuildID[sha1]=8a8cee3341d3ef76ef6796f72d5722ae9d77c8ea, not stripped

This can also be used to develop against dynamic libraries from Debian. The armhf packages can be installed in the chroot. For example, to link against curl:

# Run as root to install dependencies
sudo schroot -c buster-armdev
apt-get install libcurl4-openssl-dev:armhf
# Return to arm chroot as a normal user:
schroot -c buster-armdev
# Download curl's simple.c example
wget https://raw.githubusercontent.com/bagder/curl/master/docs/examples/simple.c
arm-linux-gnueabihf-gcc simple.c -o simple -lcurl

The "simple" binary is now built for armhf and links dynamically to curl.

Buildroot Configuration

The full-featured Debian image may be too cumbersome for some applications. Applications that require faster bootup time or a smaller root filesystem will benefit greatly from using a lighter distribution like Buildroot. Using Buildroot for generating images makes it easy to keep software up to date, both userspace and kernel. Additionally, the use of Buildroot allows for building full images completely from source, with semi-reproducable builds, and full software license reports.

To assist customers heading down this path, we maintain our own Buildroot br2-external tree. This tree includes upstream Buildroot as a submodule, which eases updating between Buildroot releases. See the Buildroot manual for more information on Buildroot and br2-external trees.

In order to provide an easy transition from a larger Linux distribution to Buildroot, we provide and maintain two levels of configurations:

  • The base configuration for each device brings in hardware support to get the unit booted, but offers minimal software support and relies mostly on tools provided by BusyBox.
  • An "extra packages" defconfig that can be merged in with any of the base configurations in order to provide many additional packages to create an environment that is more consistent with larger Linux distributions.

The larger Buildroot configuration averages about 10 seconds of boot time, much of which is spent on networking. The base configurations can reduce this time significantly.

Our Buildroot br2-external currently uses the linux-5.10.y branch of our Linux LTS kernel repository for the majority of its supported platforms.

Note: Note that our base configurations include that device's utilities package where possible. Normally, these utilities (e.g. tshwctl, tsmicroctl, etc.) list the git hash of the build source in the help output. However, due to the Buildroot process, the git hash in these utilities reflects the git hash of Buildroot-ts, NOT of the utilities repository. There is no way to work around this without building the utilities outside of Buildroot.

Installing Buildroot

We offer a pre-made filesystem tarball that is based on our default Buildroot configuration. Please contact technical support regarding access to it.

Using that tarball, it's possible to create a bootable eMMC for the TS-7100.

The default configuration was designed to be as close to our stock Debian distribution. This includes our ts7100-utils like tsmicroctl, our TS-SILO monitor daemon, drivers and firmware for the WiFi and Bluetooth module.

Building Buildroot

Buildroot is intended to be completely cross-compiled from a host Linux workstation. This process creates a cross-compiler which is then used to build all target applications, kernel, etc., and then output a bootable image / tarball. The following instructions will create a bootable image / tarball for the target system:

Clone the repository:

git clone --recurse-submodules https://github.com/embeddedTS/buildroot-ts.git
cd buildroot-ts/
Note: Support for the TS-7100 and TS-7250-V3 in Buildroot are provided by the same configuration files.

Configure the build:

# The following command uses a Buildroot script to merge two config files.
# The extra_packages_defconfig includes more usual packages to match our stock images
./buildroot/support/kconfig/merge_config.sh technologic/configs/ts7250v3_defconfig technologic/configs/extra_packages_defconfig 

# A smaller base image can be made with bare hardware support using:
# make ts7250v3_defconfig

At this point, the default configuration can be modified if desired:

make menuconfig

And finally, start the build process:


The Buildroot process can take a large amount of time to build depending on available system resources. Note that if any changes occur in the config file, it is recommended to clean the build tree and start the process over. Buildroot ccache is not enabled by default, but can be to help speed up repeated builds. See the Buildroot manual for more information about ccache and Buildroot.

Configuring the Network

Note: See the section on Ethernet Ports for port details specific to your TS-7100 model.

Buildroot implements the ip, ifconfig, route, etc., commands to manipulate the settings of interfaces. The first Ethernet interface is set up to come up automatically with our default configuration. The interfaces can also be manually set up:

# Bring up the CPU network interface
ifconfig eth0 up

# Set an IP address (assumes subnet mask)
ifconfig eth0

# Set a specific subnet
ifconfig eth0 netmask

# Configure a default route. This is the server that provides an internet connection.
route add default gw

# Edit /etc/resolv.conf for the local DNS server
echo "nameserver" > /etc/resolv.conf

Most commonly, networks will offer DHCP which can be set up with one command:

# To setup the default CPU Ethernet port
udhcpc -i eth0
# All Ethernet ports can be made active and request DHCP addresses with:

To have network settings take effect on startup in Buildroot, edit /etc/network/interfaces:

# interface file auto-generated by Buildroot

auto lo
iface lo inet loopback

auto eth0
iface eth0 inet dhcp
  pre-up /etc/network/nfs_check
  wait-delay 15

Note that the default network startup may timeout on some networks, e.g. network protocols such as STP can delay packet movement. This can be resolved in Buildroot by adding network configuration options to fail after a number of attempts (rather than a timeout) or retry for a DHCP lease indefinitely. For example, adding one of the following lines under the iface eth0 inet dhcp section:

  • udhcpc_opts -t 0 to infinitely retry
  • udhcpc_opts -t 5 to fail after five attempts.

See the man page for interfaces(5) for further information on the syntax of the interfaces file and all of the options that can be passed.

For more information on network configuration in general, Debian provides a great resource here that can be readily applied to Buildroot in most cases.

Installing New Software

Buildroot does not include a package manager by default (though it is possible to enable one). This means installing software directly on the platform can be cumbersome and is not the intended path when using Buildroot. It is recommended to modify the Buildroot configuration to include additional packages. See the Building Buildroot section for information on modifying the configuration to build additional packages.

If a desired package is not available in Buildroot, there are a number of options available moving forward. It is possible to add packages to the build process, though this does require some knowledge of Buildroot internals. Another option is to use the cross compiler that is output by Buildroot in order to compile packages on a host system and then copy them over to the target. It is also possible to install a toolchain directly on the device, and compile applications natively. The last option is the least recommended as it greatly increases the final image size and adds unnecessary complexity.

Setting up SSH

The default configuration has Dropbear set up. Dropbear is a lightweight SSH server.

Make sure the device is configured on the network and set a password for the remote user. SSH will not allow remote connections without a password set. The default configuration does not set a password for the root user, nor are any other users configured.

passwd root

After this setup it is now possible to connect from a remote PC supporting SSH. On Linux/OS X this is the ssh command, or from Windows using a client such as PuTTY.

Starting Automatically

Buildroot defaults to using the BusyBox init system, and all of our provided configurations use this as well. The following custom startup script uses this format. For information on other init systems that Buildroot can use, as well as creating startup scripts for these, see the Buildroot manual.

The most straightforward way to add an application to startup is to create a startup script. This example startup script that will toggle the red LED on during startup, and off during shutdown. In this case the script is named customstartup which can be changed as needed.

Create the file /etc/init.d/S99customstartup with the following contents. Be sure to set the script as executable!

#! /bin/sh
# /etc/init.d/customstartup

case "$1" in
    echo 1 > /sys/class/leds/red-led/brightness
    ## If you are launching a daemon or other long running processes
    ## this should be started with
    # nohup /usr/local/bin/yourdaemon &
    # if you have anything that needs to run on shutdown
    echo 0 > /sys/class/leds/red-led/brightness
    echo "Usage: customstartup start|stop" >&2
    exit 3
exit 0
Note: The $PATH variable is not set up by default in init scripts so this will either need to be done manually or the full path to your application must be included.

Buildroot provides numerous mechanisms to create this file in the target filesystem at build time. See the Buildroot manual for more information on this.

This script will be automatically called at startup and shutdown thanks to the file location and naming. However, it can also be manually started or stopped:

/etc/init.d/S99customstartup start
/etc/init.d/S99customstartup stop

Backup / Restore

Creating A Backup / Production Image

Note: This section is incomplete at this time.

Restoring Stock / Backup / Production Image

Booted from USB / NFS

These instructions assume the TS-7100 is booted to Linux from network via NFS or USB mass storage. They also assume that the eMMC is unmodified, with a single partition. If the partition table has been modified, a utility such as 'gparted' or 'fdisk' may be needed to remove the existing partition table and recreate it with a single partition. Note that the partition table must be "MBR" or "msdos", the "GPT" partition table format is not supported by U-Boot.

Once booted to any device that is not the eMMC:

# Verify nothing else has the first eMMC partition mounted
umount /dev/mmcblk0p1

mkfs.ext3 /dev/mmcblk0p1
mount /dev/mmcblk0p1 /mnt/emmc
wget http://ftp.embeddedTS.com/ftp/ts-arm-sbc/ts-7100-linux/distributions/ts7100-linux4.9-latest.tar.xz
tar -xf ts7100-linux4.9-latest.tar.xz -C /mnt/emmc
umount /mnt/emmc
Note: The ext4 filesystem can be used instead of ext3, but it may require additional options. U-Boot does not support the 64bit addressing added as the default behavior in recent revisions of mkfs.ext4. If using e2fsprogs 1.43 or newer, the options "-O ^64bit,^metadata_csum" must be used with ext4 for proper compatibility. Older versions of e2fsprogs do not need these options passed nor are they needed for ext3.

Once written, the files on disk can be verified to ensure they are the same as the source files in the archive. To do so, run the following commands:

mount /dev/mmcblk0p1 /mnt/emmc
cd /mnt/emmc/
md5sum --quiet -c md5sums.txt
cd -
umount /mnt/emmc

The 'md5sum' command will report any differences between files and their checksums. Any differences are an indication of failure to write data or a damaged disk. Note that the "/md5sums.txt" file is present in our stock tarballs and is created in custom images as a part of our scripts to do so. This file may not be present in custom images created without our tools, or it may be present but not properly updated. This will result in reported errors.

Compile the Kernel

Compiling the kernel requires an armhf toolchain. We recommend development under Debian Stretch which includes an armhf compiler in the repositories. See the Debian Stretch cross compilation section for instructions on installing a proper cross compiler.

git clone https://github.com/embeddedTS/linux-4.9.y
cd linux-4.9.y

# These next commands set up some necessary environment variables
export ARCH=arm
export CROSS_COMPILE=arm-linux-gnueabihf-
export LOADADDR=0x80800000

# This sets up the default configuration that we ship with
make tsimx6ul_defconfig

## Make any changes in "make menuconfig" or driver modifications, then compile
make && make zImage && make modules

The following will install the kernel and modules to a temporary directory, and then pack them up in to a single tarball:

TEMPDIR=$(mktemp -d)
mkdir "${TEMPDIR}/boot/"
cp arch/arm/boot/zImage "${TEMPDIR}"/boot/zImage
cp arch/arm/boot/dts/imx6ul*ts*.dtb  "${TEMPDIR}"/boot/
INSTALL_MOD_PATH="${TEMPDIR}" make modules_install
INSTALL_HDR_PATH="${TEMPDIR}" make headers_install 
tar czf linux-tsimx6ul-"$(cat include/config/kernel.release)"-"$(date +"%Y%m%d")".tar.gz -C "${TEMPDIR}" .
rm -rf "${TEMPDIR}"

This will output a tarball with the kernel version and short git hash, as well as the date the tarball was created. For example: linux-tsimx6ul-v4.9.171-60-g01e2117e-20190823.tar.gz

This tarball can be directly unpacked to the root folder of a bootable media for the device. It is also possible to unpack it directly on a booted system, however we do not recommend doing so on an active deployed system without extensive testing.

# Unpack it to a mounted disk, this assumes the disk is mounted to "/mnt"
tar xf linux-tsimx6ul...tar.gz -C /mnt

# Unpack it to the root directory of a booted system
tar xf linux-tsimx6ul...tar.gz -C /

Production Mechanism

The TS-7100's U-Boot has the ability to locate and run a U-Boot script file named /tsinit.ub on the root of a USB drive. This process occurs when attempting to boot to the U-Boot shell. If this script exists, U-Boot will load and run it automatically. This is intended for the initial production of units and allows mass programming various media from a USB mass storage device.

For access to the files described here, please contact technical support. This includes a basic Linux kernel and a small initramfs that will mount the USB drive at "/mnt/usb/" and execute "/mnt/usb/blast.sh".

The blast image and scripts require a minimum of 50 MB; this plus any disk images or tarballs used dictate the minimum disk size required. The USB drive must have at least 1 partition, with the first partition being formatted ext2/3 or fat32/vfat.

Note: The ext4 filesystem can be used instead of ext3, but it may require additional options. U-Boot does not support the 64bit addressing added as the default behavior in recent revisions of mkfs.ext4. If using e2fsprogs 1.43 or newer, the options "-O ^64bit,^metadata_csum" must be used with ext4 for proper compatibility. Older versions of e2fsprogs do not need these options passed nor are they needed for ext3.
# This assumes USB drive is /dev/sdc:
sudo mkfs.ext3 /dev/sdc1
sudo mkdir /mnt/usb/
sudo mount /dev/sdc1 /mnt/usb/
sudo tar --numeric-owner -xf /path/to/tsimx6ul_usb_blaster-latest.tar.bz2 -C /mnt/usb/

At this point, disk images or tarballs would be copied to the /mnt/usb/ folder and named as noted below. The latest disk images we provide can be downloaded from our FTP site, see the backup and restore section for links to these files. Note that the script expects images and tarballs to have specific names. When using an ext* filesystem, symlinks can be used.

The formatted USB drive boots into a small Buildroot initramfs environment with filesystem and partitioning tools installed. This can be used to format SD, eMMC, or other disks. The Buildroot environment starts up and calls /blast.sh on the USB device. By default this script is set up to look for a number of of specific files on the USB disk and write these to media on the host device. Upon completion of the script the green or red LEDs will blink to visually indicate a pass or fail of the script. This script can be used without modification to write images from USB with these filenames:

SD Card sdimage.tar.{bz2,xz} Tar of the filesystem. This will repartition the SD card to 1 ext4 partition and extract this tar to the filesystem. If present, a /md5sums.txt file will be checked and every file can be verified on the filesystem. This md5sums file is optional and can be omitted, but it must not be blank if present.
sdimage.dd.{bz2,xz} Disk image of the card. This will be written to the SD card block device directly. If present, a sdimage.dd.md5 file be used to verify the data written to the SD card against this checksum.
eMMC emmcimage.tar.{bz2,xz} Tar of the filesystem. This will repartition the eMMC to 1 ext4 partition and extract this tar to the filesystem. If present, a /md5sums.txt file will be checked and every file can be verified on the filesystem. This md5sums file is optional and can be omitted, but it must not be blank if present.
emmcimage.dd.{bz2,xz} Disk image of the card. This will be written to mmcblk1 directly. If present, a emmcimage.dd.md5 file be used to verify the data written to the SD card against this checksum.

Most users should be able to use the above script without modification. Our buildroot sources are available from our github repo. To build the whole setup and create a USB drive, the following commands can be used. See the repository README for information on the project and how to make modifications.

make tsimx6ul_usbprod_defconfig && make

The resulting output file tsimx6ul-usb-production-rootfs.tar.bz2 can be unpacked to the first partition of the USB drive as outlined above.



The TS-7100-Z supports five 12-bit ADC inputs using the i.MX6UL CPU's integrated ADC. Four of these inputs can sample 0-12VDC or 0-20mA. The fifth can sample 0-50VDC.

The pin assignments and names for accessing each ADC input are:

CN32 pin[1] Pin label Schematic name CPU signal 6UL GPIO ADC IIO name Range
27 4 AN_0[2] 6UL_AN_0 GPIO1_IO04 ADC1_IN4 voltage4 0-50 V
25 5 AN_1_STC 6UL_AN_1 GPIO1_IO05 ADC1_IN5 voltage5 0-12 V
23 8 AN_2_STC 6UL_AN_2 GPIO1_IO08 ADC1_IN8 voltage8 0-12 V
21 9 AN_3_STC 6UL_AN_3 GPIO1_IO09 ADC1_IN9 voltage9 0-12 V
19 0 AN_4_STC 6UL_AN_4 GPIO1_IO00 ADC1_IN0 voltage0 0-12 V
  1. See the TS-7100 IO Terminal Block section for a pinout illustration of the header, which is labeled CN32 on the schematic and silkscreen.
  2. The 0-50V AN_0 (Analog pin labeled 4) signal has an alternate function of being a high-side switch, as discussed in the GPIO section.

To switch an ADC to 0-20mA current-loop receiver mode, the appropriate enable must be set high. These are EN_CL_1 through EN_CL_4, and are controlled by GPIO commands as shown below.

ADC Table
Pin label Schematic Name IIO Name 0-12 V Select 0-20 mA Loop Select read-back[1]
5 AN_1_STC voltage5 gpioset 5 9=0 gpioset 5 9=1 gpioget 6 1
8 AN_2_STC voltage8 gpioset 5 10=0 gpioset 5 10=1 gpioget 6 2
9 AN_3_STC voltage9 gpioset 5 11=0 gpioset 5 11=1 gpioget 6 3
0 AN_4_STC voltage0 gpioset 5 14=0 gpioset 5 14=1 gpioget 6 4
  1. The read-back sense is inverted from the write values, so reading 1 indicates that voltage is being sampled, and 0 indicates that current is being sampled.
Note: Only the four 0-12 V ADC inputs — corresponding with the pins labeled 5, 8, 9, and 0 in the above tables — can be used as current-loop receivers.

IIO Access to ADCs

The preferred way to access these ADCs is through the Linux Industrial I/O Subsystem (IIO), which provides sample rates up to 6ksps across all inputs. The simplest API it offers for slow speed acquisition is via sysfs (/sys):

cat /sys/bus/iio/devices/iio:device0/in_voltage{4,5,8,9,0}_raw

The fastest API is in C which will get about 6ksps:

/* Build with gcc adc-test.c -o adc-test -liio 
 * Gets ~6ksps
 * At the time of writing this does not support the buffer interface */

#include <stdint.h>
#include <stdio.h>
#include <string.h>
#include <assert.h>
#include <stdio.h>
#include <errno.h>
#include <iio.h>

uint32_t scale_mv(uint32_t raw, uint32_t max_mv)
	/* scale a 0-4095 raw reading to 0-max_mv mV */
	uint32_t val = raw * max_mv / 4095;

	return val;

int main(int argc, char **argv)
	static struct iio_context *ctx;
	static struct iio_device *dev;
	static struct iio_channel *chn[5];
	int i, ret;
	long long sample;

	ctx = iio_create_default_context();
	dev = iio_context_find_device(ctx, "2198000.adc");

	chn[0] = iio_device_find_channel(dev, "voltage4", false);
	chn[1] = iio_device_find_channel(dev, "voltage5", false);
	chn[2] = iio_device_find_channel(dev, "voltage8", false);
	chn[3] = iio_device_find_channel(dev, "voltage9", false);
	chn[4] = iio_device_find_channel(dev, "voltage0", false);

	for (i = 0; i < 5; i++) {
		ret = iio_channel_attr_read_longlong(chn[i], "raw", &sample);

		printf("AN_CH%d_mv=%d\n", i, scale_mv((uint32_t)sample, (i == 0) ? 50000 : 12000));

	return 0;

The Python bindings currently achieve about 2ksps with similar code.

#!/usr/bin/env python

import iio

ctx = iio.Context('local:')
dev = ctx.find_device('2198000.adc')

scan_channels = ["voltage4", "voltage5", "voltage8", "voltage9", "voltage0"]

for chan_name in scan_channels:
	chan_n = int(chan_name[len("voltage"):])
	chn = dev.find_channel(chan_name)
	raw = int(chn.attrs['raw'].value)

	# Scale 0-4095 raw value to 0-12 V or 0-50 V for ADC 4.
	voltage_range = 50. if chan_n == 4 else 12.
	scaled = raw * voltage_range / 4095
	print('ADC1_IN{}={:.3f}'.format(chan_n, scaled))

Battery Backed RTC

The TS-7100 implements an STMicro "M41T00S" Battery Backed RTC using an external battery. This RTC is connected to the CPU via I2C and is handled by the kernel and is presented as a standard RTC device in Linux. On the TS-7100 series, the RTC is located on the CPU module with the battery backup located on the I/O board.

The TS-7100-Z I/O board provides battery backed power to the RTC via a [#Battery Connector|replaceable CR1632 coin cell].


Note: The latest image for this platform as of April 28th, 2022 has known issues with the Wi-Fi driver and BLE coexistence due to incompatibility with cfg80211 powersave modes.

If using both Wi-Fi and BLE, it is strongly recommended to bring up the Wi-Fi interface, and then run iw wlan0 set power_save off to disable powersave modes.

This issue will be addressed in future images and has already been addressed in our kernel sources. We will continue to provide updates as we receive them from the Wi-Fi module manufacturer.

The Wi-Fi option for this platform also includes a Bluetooth 5.0 LE module. Support for Bluetooth is provided by the BlueZ project. BlueZ has support for many different profiles for HID, A2DP, and many more. Refer to the BlueZ documentation for more information. Please see our BLE Examples page for information on installing the latest BlueZ release, getting started, and using demo applications.

Both Wi-Fi and Bluetooth can be active at the same time on this platform. Note however, that either the Wi-Fi interface needs to be not brought up if Wi-Fi is unused, or it needs to actively connect to an access point or act as an access point. The Bluetooth module can be activated with the following commands:

For Bluez versions found on Debian Stretch and below:

# Enable Bluetooth, and load the firmware
echo BT_POWER_UP > /dev/wilc_bt
sleep 1
echo BT_DOWNLOAD_FW > /dev/wilc_bt
sleep 1

# Attach the BLE device to the system, increase the baud, and enable flow control
hciattach /dev/ttymxc2 any 115200 noflow
sleep 1
hcitool cmd 0x3F 0x0053 00 10 0E 00 01
stty -F /dev/ttymxc2 921600 crtscts

# Note that no other HCI commands should be used! In older versions of BlueZ, HCI commands exist alongside bluetoothd, however HCI commands can interfere with the bluetoothd stack.

For newer versions of BlueZ found on Debian Buster or newer, or newer versions of BlueZ built from source:

echo BT_POWER_UP > /dev/wilc_bt
sleep 1
echo BT_DOWNLOAD_FW > /dev/wilc_bt
sleep 1

btattach -N -B /dev/ttymxc2 -S 115200 &
sleep 1
bluetoothctl power on
sleep 1
hcitool cmd 0x3F 0x0053 00 10 0E 00 01
kill %1 # This terminates the above btattach command
sleep 1
btattach -B /dev/ttymxc2 -S 921600 &

At this point, the device is running at 921600 baud with flow control, and is fully set up ready to be controlled by various components of BlueZ tools. For example, to do a scan of nearby devices:

power on
scan on

This will return a list of devices such as:

root@ts-imx6ul:~# bluetoothctl  
Agent registered
[CHG] Controller F8:F0:05:XX:XX:XX Pairable: yes
[bluetooth]# power on
Changing power on succeeded
[CHG] Controller F8:F0:05:XX:XX:XX Powered: yes
[bluetooth]# scan on
Discovery started
[CHG] Controller F8:F0:05:XX:XX:XX Discovering: yes
[NEW] Device 51:DD:C0:XX:XX:XX Device_Name
[NEW] Device 2A:20:E2:XX:XX:XX Device_Name
[CHG] Device 51:DD:C0:XX:XX:XX RSSI: -93
[CHG] Device 51:DD:C0:XX:XX:XX RSSI: -82
[NEW] Device E2:08:B5:XX:XX:XX Device_Name
[CHG] Device 51:DD:C0:XX:XX:XX RSSI: -93
[CHG] Device 2A:20:E2:XX:XX:XX RSSI: -94
[NEW] Device 68:62:92:XX:XX:XX Device_Name
[NEW] Device 68:79:12:XX:XX:XX Device_Name
[bluetooth]# quit

Please note that the Bluetooth module requires the modem control lines CTS and RTS as flow control when running at higher baud rates. It is possible to run the module at the initial 115200 baud if the flow control lines are unwanted.

The module supports some other commands as well:

# Allow the BT chip to enter sleep mode
echo BT_FW_CHIP_ALLOW_SLEEP > /dev/wilc_bt

# Power down the BT radio when not in use
echo BT_POWER_DOWN > /dev/wilc_bt


The TS-7100-Z CPU has a single FlexCAN port that uses the Linux SocketCAN implementation. The port can be set up and used with the following command:

ip link set can0 up type can bitrate 1000000

The CAN transceiver is automatically controlled by the kernel. If the interface is brought up in Linux then the transceiver will be enabled. By default when the kernel boots, the interface is down, and therefore the transceiver is disabled.

At this point, the port can be used with standard SocketCAN libraries. In Debian, we provide the utilities 'cansend' and 'candump' to test the ports or as a simple packet send/receive tool. In order to test the port, tie CAN_H to the CAN_H pin of the bus, doing the same for the CAN_L pin. Then use the following commands:

candump can0
# This command will echo all data received on the bus to the terminal

cansend can0 7Df#03010c
#This command will send out the above CAN packet to the bus

The above example packet is designed to work with the Ozen Elektronik myOByDic 1610 ECU simulator to read the RPM speed. In this case, the ECU simulator would return data from candump with:

 <0x7e8> [8] 04 41 0c 60 40 00 00 00 
 <0x7e9> [8] 04 41 0c 60 40 00 00 00 

In the output above, columns 6 and 7 are the current RPM value. This shows a simple way to prove out the communication before moving to another language.

The following example sends the same packet and parses the same response in C:

#include <stdio.h>
#include <pthread.h>
#include <net/if.h>
#include <string.h>
#include <unistd.h>
#include <net/if.h>
#include <sys/ioctl.h>
#include <assert.h>
#include <linux/can.h>
#include <linux/can/raw.h>

int main(void)
	int s;
	int nbytes;
	struct sockaddr_can addr;
	struct can_frame frame;
	struct ifreq ifr;
	struct iovec iov;
	struct msghdr msg;
	char ctrlmsg[CMSG_SPACE(sizeof(struct timeval)) + CMSG_SPACE(sizeof(__u32))];
	char *ifname = "can0";
	if((s = socket(PF_CAN, SOCK_RAW, CAN_RAW)) < 0) {
		perror("Error while opening socket");
		return -1;
	strcpy(ifr.ifr_name, ifname);
	ioctl(s, SIOCGIFINDEX, &ifr);
	addr.can_family  = AF_CAN;
	addr.can_ifindex = ifr.ifr_ifindex;
	if(bind(s, (struct sockaddr *)&addr, sizeof(addr)) < 0) {
		return -2;
 	/* For the ozen myOByDic 1610 this requests the RPM guage */
	frame.can_id  = 0x7df;
	frame.can_dlc = 3;
	frame.data[0] = 3;
	frame.data[1] = 1;
	frame.data[2] = 0x0c;
	nbytes = write(s, &frame, sizeof(struct can_frame));
	if(nbytes < 0) {
		return -3;

	iov.iov_base = &frame;
	msg.msg_name = &addr;
	msg.msg_iov = &iov;
	msg.msg_iovlen = 1;
	msg.msg_control = &ctrlmsg;
	iov.iov_len = sizeof(frame);
	msg.msg_namelen = sizeof(struct sockaddr_can);
	msg.msg_controllen = sizeof(ctrlmsg);  
	msg.msg_flags = 0;

	do {
		nbytes = recvmsg(s, &msg, 0);
		if (nbytes < 0) {
			return -4;

		if (nbytes < (int)sizeof(struct can_frame)) {
			fprintf(stderr, "read: incomplete CAN frame\n");
	} while(nbytes == 0);

	if(frame.data[0] == 0x4)
		printf("RPM at %d of 255\n", frame.data[3]);
	return 0;

See the Kernel's CAN documentation here. Other languages have bindings to access CAN such as Python, Java using JNI.

In production use of CAN we also recommend setting a restart-ms for each active CAN port.

ip link set can0 type can restart-ms 100

This allows the CAN bus to automatically recover in the event of a bus-off condition.


This device uses the i.MX6UL CPU, running at 696 MHz, based upon a Cortex-A7 core and targeting low power consumption.

Refer to NXP's documentation for more detailed information on the i.MX6UL.

eMMC Interface

Note: This section is incomplete at this time.

The i.MX6UL SD card controller supports the MMC specification, the TS-7100 includes a soldered down eMMC IC to provide on-board flash media.

Our default software image contains 2 partitions:

Device Contents
/dev/mmcblk0 eMMC block device
/dev/mmcblk0boot0 eMMC boot partition
/dev/mmcblk0boot1 eMMC boot partition
/dev/mmcblk0p1 Full Debian Linux partition

This platform includes an eMMC device, a soldered down MMC flash device. Our off the shelf builds are 4 GB, but up to 64 GB are available for customized builds. The eMMC flash appears to Linux as an SD card at /dev/mmcblk0. The eMMC includes additional boot partitions that are used by U-Boot and are not affected by the eMMC partition table.

The eMMC module has a similar concern by default to SD cards in that they should not be powered down during a write/erase cycle. However, this eMMC module includes support for setting a fuse for a "Write Reliability" mode, and a "psuedo SLC (pSLC)" mode. With both of these enabled all writes will be atomic to 512 B and each NAND cell will be treated as a single layer rather than a multi-layer cell. If a sector is being written during a power loss, a block is guaranteed to have either the old or new data. Even in cases where the wrong data is present on the next boot, fsck is often able to deal with the older data being present in a 512 B block. The downsides to setting these modes are that it will reduce the overall write speed and halve the available space on the eMMC to roughly 1.759 GiB. Please note that even with these settings, Technologic Systems strongly recommends designing the end application to eliminate any situations where a power-loss event can occur while any disk is mounted as read/write. The TS-SILO option available on certain TS-7100 I/O boards can help to eliminate the dangerous situation.

The 'mmc-utils' package is used to enable these modes. The command is pre-installed on the latest image. Additionally we have created a script to safely enable the write reliability and pSLC modes. Since the U-Boot binary and environment reside on the eMMC, care must be taken to save the current state of the boot partitions, enable the modes, restore the boot partitions, and re-enable proper booting options. This script can be used in combination with the production mechanism scripting to complete these steps as part of an end application production process.

WARNING: Enabling these modes causes all data on the disk to become invalid and must be rewritten. Do not attempt to run the 'mmc' commands from the script individually, all steps in the script must occur as they are or the unit may be unable to boot. If there are any failures of the script, care must be taken to resolve any issues while the unit is still booted or it may fail to boot in the future.
Note: Enabling these modes is a one-way operation, it is not possible to undo them once they are made. Because of this, setting these eMMC modes will invalidate Technologic Systems' return/replacement warranty on the unit. See the warranty section for more information on this.

The 'emmc_reliability' script can be found in the TS-7100 utilities github repository.

The script must be run when boot from any media other than eMMC, such as NFS, or USB. No partition of the eMMC disk can be mounted when these commands are run. Doing so may result in corruption or inability for the unit to boot. Once the pSLC mode is enabled, all data on the disk will become invalid. This means the partition table will need to be re-created, the filesystems formatted, and all filesystem contents re-written to disk. This is why we recommend using this script in conjunction with the production mechanism scripting. The 'emmc_reliability' script can be run first, then the rest of the production script can create and format the partitions as well as write data to disk.

The script requires a single argument, the device node of the eMMC disk, and will output verbosely to stderr. Any specific errors will also be printed out on stderr.

Example usage:

./emmc_reliability /dev/mmcblk0

Upon successful run, the script will return 0. Any errors will return a positive code. See the script for detailed error code information.


The NXP processor implements two 10/100 ethernet controllers with support built into the Linux kernel.

Linux device "eth0" (labeled "ETH B" on the enclosure) maps to the controller ethernet@20b4000, and device "eth1" (labeled "ETH A" on the enclosure) to ethernet@2188000.

Standard Linux utilities such as ifconfig/ip can be used to control this interface. See the Configuring the Network section for more details. For the specifics of this interface see the CPU manual.


FPGA Registers

The TS-7100 FPGA is connected to the CPU over the WEIM bus. This provides 8-bit, 16-bit, or 32-bit access to the FPGA mapped at 0x5000_0000.

For example, to read the FPGA information at the first register of the syscon:

root@ts-imx6ul:~# memtool md -l 0x50004000+4
50004000: 00000006
Offset Description
0x0000 UART 16550 #0
0x0100 Opencore SPI controller #0
0x0120 Opencore SPI controller #1
0x4000 FPGA Syscon

FPGA 16550

This FPGA includes a 16550 UART peripheral that can be used as a standard Linux serial port. It is not recommended to interact directly with these registers.


This FPGA includes a pair of SPI master devices. These are used for the FRAM memory, accessing the flash used for the LCD splash screen image, and the LCD touch screen itself. All of these operations are handled via the Linux kernel. It is not recommended to interact directly with these registers

FPGA Syscon

The FPGA syscon is the main system control block of the FPGA. Contained in this region is the FPGA GPIO, PWM, and IRQ control. It is not recommended to interact directly with these registers unless directed to do so by other manual sections.

Some registers are dual purpose, having separate read and write functionality; while others may only have write functionality. Registers that do not read and write the same are indicated with "(RD)" and "(WR)" notation. All other registers read and write the same data set. Any unlisted register addresses are Reserved / Undefined.

Offset Bits Description
0x00 (RD) 31:0 Revision and Info Register.
0x10 (RD) 15:0 DIO bank 0 Pin State
0x10 (WR) 15:0 DIO bank 0 Data Set
0x12 (WR) 15:0 DIO bank 0 Output Enable Set
0x14 (RD) 15:0 DIO bank 0 Data
0x14 (WR) 15:0 DIO bank 0 Data Clear
0x16 (RD) 15:0 DIO bank 0 Output Enable
0x16 (WR) 15:0 DIO bank 0 Output Enable Clear
0x20 (WR) 31:0 Fractional clock generator [1]
0x24 (RD) 31:0 IRQ Status
0x24 (WR) 31:0 Fractional PWM generator
0x40 (RD) 15:0 DIO bank 1 Pin State
0x40 (WR) 15:0 DIO bank 1 Data Set
0x42 (WR) 15:0 DIO bank 1 Output Enable Set
0x44 (RD) 15:0 DIO bank 1 Data
0x44 (WR) 15:0 DIO bank 1 Data Clear
0x46 (RD) 15:0 DIO bank 1 Output Enable
0x46 (WR) 15:0 DIO bank 1 Output Enable Clear
0x48 31:0 IRQ mask
0x50 (RD) 15:0 DIO bank 2 Pin State
0x50 (WR) 15:0 DIO bank 2 Data Set
0x52 (WR) 15:0 DIO bank 2 Output Enable Set
0x54 (RD) 15:0 DIO bank 2 Data
0x54 (WR) 15:0 DIO bank 2 Data Clear
0x56 (RD) 15:0 DIO bank 2 Output Enable
0x56 (WR) 15:0 DIO bank 2 Output Enable Clear
  1. Note that this is also used for UART clock generation.


Bit Description
31:17 Reserved
16 Touch Screen IRQ
15:13 Reserved
12 DIO Fault Breaker IRQ
11 Reserved
10 Opencore SPI Controller #1 IRQ
9 Opencore SPI Controller #0 IRQ
8:1 Reserved


The Cypress FM25L16B provides 2 KB of non-volatile memory in a manner not unlike an SPI EEPROM. However, the nature of ferro-electric RAM (FRAM) means it is incredibly fast to write, and is specified with 100 trillion read/write cycles per each byte and a 150 year data retention at temperatures below 65 ℃.

The FRAM can be accessed as a flat file from Linux:

# xxd -a /sys/bus/spi/devices/spi32766.0/eeprom | head
00000000: 0000 0000 0000 0000 0000 0000 0000 0000  ................
000007f0: 0000 0000 0000 0000 0000 0000 0000 0075  ...............u

If U-Boot's bootcount tracking environment variable is enabled, the last byte of FRAM is reserved for storing the boot count, and care should be taken to not overwrite it inadvertently. In U-Boot, the boot count can be accessed with the 'fram' command.


Note: This section is incomplete at this time.

The i.MX6UL CPU and FPGA GPIO are exposed using a kernel character device. This interface provides a set of files and directories for interacting with GPIO which can be used from any language that interact with special files in linux using ioctl() or similar. For our platforms, we pre-install the "libgpiod" library and binaries. Documentation on these tools can be found here. This section only covers using these userspace tools and does not provide guidance on using the libgpiod library in end applications. Please see the libgpiod documentation for this purpose.

A user with suitable permissions to read and write /dev/gpiochip* files can immediately interact with GPIO pins. For example, to see if input power has failed:

gpioget 4 0

Multiple pins in the same chip can be read simultaneously by passing multiple pin numbers separated by spaces.

To write to a pin, the 'gpioset' command is used. For example, to set Relay 1:

gpioset 4 4=1

Multiple pins in the same chip can be set simultaneously by passing multiple pin=value pairs separated by spaces.

If a call with 'gpioset' or 'gpioget' fails with "Device or resource busy," that means that specific GPIO is claimed by another device. The command 'cat /sys/kernel/debug/gpio' can be used to get a list of all of the system GPIO and what has claimed them.

The 'gpiomon' tool can be used to monitor pins for changes.

Chip Pin Location
0 0 AIN 4 or Digital Input AIN 4 on CN32 Terminal
0 4 AIN 0 on CN32 Terminal
0 5 AIN 1 or Digital Input AIN 1 on CN32 Terminal
0 8 AIN 2 or Digital Input AIN 2 on CN32 Terminal
0 9 AIN 3 or Digital Input AIN 3 on CN32 Terminal
0 18 CPU Board Red LED
0 19 CPU Board Green LED
4 0 Power Input Failure
4 1 FPGA Interrupt input pin
4 4 Relay 1 on CN32 Terminal
4 5 Relay 2 on CN32 Terminal
5 0 DIO 1 Out or PWM on CN32 Terminal
5 1 DIO 2 Out or PWM on CN32 Terminal
5 2 DIO 1 In on CN32 Terminal
5 3 DIO 2 In on CN32 Terminal
5 4 DIO 3 In on CN32 Terminal
5 5 FPGA DIO 06
5 6 Digital In 1 on CN32 Terminal
5 7 Digital In 2 on CN32 Terminal
5 8 Digital In 3 on CN32 Terminal
5 9 AIN 1 4-20 mA current loop enable
5 10 AIN 2 4-20 mA current loop enable
5 11 AIN 3 4-20 mA current loop enable
5 12 Reserved
5 13 Reserved
5 14 AIN 4 4-20 mA current loop enable
5 15 High-Side Switch or HSPWM
6 1 AIN 1 0-12 V meas. mode [1]
6 2 AIN 2 0-12 V meas. mode [1]
6 3 AIN 3 0-12 V meas. mode [1]
6 4 AIN 4 0-12 V meas. mode [1]
6 5 en usb host 5v
6 6 eth PHY reset
6 7 wifi reset
6 8 I/O Board Red LED
6 9 I/O Board Green LED
6 12 Reserved
6 13 DIO 3 Out or PWM on CN32 Terminal
6 14 HSPWM enable
6 15 PWM enable, both OE and dat
7 0 Touchscreen IRQ
7 2 FPGA Strapping Pin
7 3 FPGA Strapping Pin
7 4 FPGA Strapping Pin
7 5 FPGA Strapping Pin
7 6 Data 0: Select 3.3 V power on CN16 XBee Socket [2]
Data 1: Select 4 V power on CN16 XBee Socket [2]
7 8 NIM_PWR_ON CN16 XBee Socket
7 9 Enable USB interface on CN16 XBee Socket [3]
7 10 I/O over-current/over-voltage breaker tripped [4]
7 11 FPGA Strapping Pin
7 12 FPGA Strapping Pin
7 13 Reserved
7 14 LCD backlight enable
  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 This bit is read only. Clearing the associated current loop enable bit will set this bit, setting the CL enable will clear this bit
  2. 2.0 2.1 To disable power on this pin, set the GPIO as an input with 'gpioset' or otherwise
  3. This will relocate the USB channel connected to the top USB host port
  4. This bit must be cleared manually after a trip to de-assert the associated IRQ

Digital Inputs

The digital inputs on the TS-7100-Z are capable of supporting various voltage ranges and input modes. The digital inputs support dry contact switches as well as a driven input voltage. The table below lists each digital input, the bank and pin number for reading the input, the maximum input voltage range, the threshold voltages, as well as the location of the input. VIH Min is the minimum voltage on the input to trigger a logic 1 input. VIL Max is the maximum voltage on the input to trigger a logic 0 input. All of the digital inputs are hysteretic. The driving input must be able to at least sink current to drive the input low, but all digital inputs are compatible with push-pull drivers.

Input Name Bank Pin V Range VIH Min VIL Max Location
Digital In 1 5 6 0-30 V ~2.57 V ~0.95 V CN32 Terminal, pin 9
Digital In 2 5 7 0-30 V ~2.57 V ~0.95 V CN32 Terminal, pin 11
Digital In 3 5 8 0-30 V ~2.57 V ~0.95 V CN32 Terminal, pin 13
DIO 1 In [1] 5 2 0-30 V ~2.54 V ~0.90 V CN32 Terminal, pin 14
DIO 2 In [1] 5 3 0-30 V ~2.54 V ~0.90 V CN32 Terminal, pin 16
DIO 3 In [1] 5 4 0-30 V ~2.54 V ~0.90 V CN32 Terminal, pin 18
AIN 1 In [2] 0 5 0-12 V ~8.60 V ~7.90 V CN32 Terminal, pin 25
AIN 2 In [2] 0 8 0-12 V ~8.60 V ~7.90 V CN32 Terminal, pin 23
AIN 3 In [2] 0 9 0-12 V ~8.60 V ~7.90 V CN32 Terminal, pin 21
AIN 4 In [2] 0 0 0-12 V ~8.60 V ~7.90 V CN32 Terminal, pin 19
  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 This GPIO should only be read as an input. Its value reflects the voltage on the physical CN32 pin, regardless of output status
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 The AIN pins can be used as Digital Inputs, but require software changes first. See the ADC section for more information

Digital Outputs

The TS-7100-Z supports a handful of digital output pins. These are able to act as high-current low-side switches. The table below lists each digital output, the bank and pin number for accessing it, the maximum voltage rating, the maximum current output, as well as the location of the pin.

DIO Name Bank Pin Max V Rating Max A Rating Location
DIO 1 Out 5 0 30 V 700 mA (sink) [1] CN32 Terminal, pin 14
DIO 2 Out 5 1 30 V 700 mA (sink) [1] CN32 Terminal, pin 16
DIO 3 Out 6 13 30 V 700 mA (sink) [1] CN32 Terminal, pin 18
High-Side Switch 5 15 48 V [2] 300 mA (source) [3] CN32 Terminal, pin 27
  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Not to exceed 1000 mA total across all three Digital I/O, doing so will cause the over-current breaker to trip
  2. The output voltage is the same as the TS-7100-Z input voltage
  3. Exceeding 330 mA will cause the over-current breaker to trip

Digital Output Over-Current Breaker

The TS-7100-Z I/O PCB in combination with the FPGA on the TS-7100, implements an electronic over-current breaker. When this breaker is tripped all three DIO Out paths will be disable, High-Side Switch output will be disabled, analog current loops will be disabled, and the red LED on the TS-7100-Z I/O board will be illuminated. That is, digital outputs will cease to sink or source any amount of current, and the AIN inputs will have 4-20 mA input disabled. The tripped breaker will also trigger a DIO fault breaker interrupt as well as set the associated GPIO output, 7 10. The GPIO output, 7 10, must be cleared manually in order to reset the IRQ output. However, once the breaker trips, and the trip condition is cleared; all relevant GPIO settings can immediately be re-enabled without clearing this GPIO output bit.

Trip Conditions

See the table above for each DIO channel's maximum current rating. Note that the breaker does NOT enforce these ratings per DIO channel. The breaker will trip if the combined total amount of current sunk from all three digital outputs exceeds 1 A.

See the table above for the High-Side Switch's maximum current rating. If the rated max supply current is exceeded, the breaker will trip.

Note that all of these are in parallel. If the combined DIO sink current OR High-Side Switch current is exceeded, then the breaker will trip. The over-current breaker will also disable analog 4-20 mA current loop measurements.



The i.MX6UL supports standard I2C at 100 kHz, or using fast mode for 400 kHz operation.

The kernel makes the I2C available at /dev/i2c-# as noted above. Linux i2c-tools (i2cdetect, i2cget, i2cset) can be used to interface with devices, or custom clients can be written.


The i.MX6UL CPU GPIO are also able to function as interrupts on rising and falling edges. This is accessible from the kernel as well as userspace. Userspace IRQs and handled via libgpiod.


Splash Screen

The LCD on this device is able to display a customizable splash screen immediately after power on. This is accomplished by the on-board FPGA reading data from an SPI NOR flash device, and writing it directly to the LCD in its SPI mode. This image is then left on the screen during the rest of the bootup process until the kernel takes over and drives the LCD in parallel RGB mode. The SPI NOR flash can be updated from userspace in Linux to write the new splash screen data.

Since the LCD is a 240x320 display, the final image needs to be formatted to fit this resolution and put in a binary format that the LCD can properly display. We have created a simple script to accomplish this. The script uses ImageMagick's 'convert' tool, as well as 'gcc'. The script will take an input file, translate it to fit the display, build a small tool from C sources, run the translated image through said tool in order to put the image in the correct byte ordering, and then clean up all temporary files. Additionally, a PNG image is output by the tool to be used as a sample reference of what the translated image looks like.

A simple conversion would look like the following:

./splash-convert Logo.png

# Background color can also be passed:
./splash-convert -background blue NewLogo.jpg

# Any arguments to 'convert' can be arbitrarily passed:
./splash-convert -rotate 120 Logo.png

This will output "splash.out" which can be written directly to the SPI NOR flash as well as "splash.png" which is a sample image of what the splash screen will look like. Since ImageMagick is used to do the heavy lifting of the conversion process, the input file can be of nearly any image format.

The 'splash-convert' tool is available in the TS-7100 utilities repository.

The "splash.out" file can be written to the SPI NOR flash with the following command:

dd if=/path/to/splash.out of=/dev/mtdblock0 bs=4096 conv=sync

Note that the "bs" and "conv" arguments should always be specified when writing to this SPI NOR device with 'dd' to ensure that the eraseblocks do not receive unnecessary erases and that a full eraseblock is written every time.

Also note that on the TS-7100, the SPI NOR flash is 2 MiB but the splash screen only consumes 152 KiB of space. The rest of this flash space can be used for general storage if wanted.


The red and green LEDs can be controlled from userspace after bootup using the sysfs LED interface. For example, to turn on the red LED:

echo 1 > /sys/class/leds/cpu-red-led/brightness

The following LEDs are available on this system:

  • cpu-red-led
  • cpu-green-led
  • io-red-led
  • io-green-led

A number of triggers are also available, including timers, disk activity, and heartbeat. These allow the LEDs to represent various system activities as they occur. See the kernel LED documentation for more information on triggers and general use of LED class devices.



The TS-7100 supports 2 relays on the #CN32 Terminal Block header. These are Emet EE2-5NU-L general purpose relays that will switch up to 2A at 220VDC or 250VAC.

These can be controlled with #GPIO.

# Connect Relay 1 NO to Common
gpioset 4 4=1

# Connect Relay 1 NC to Common (default power on state)
gpioset 4 4=0

# Connect Relay 2 NO to Common
gpioset 4 5=1

# Connect Relay 2 NC to Common (default power on state)
gpioset 4 5=0


This board implements a low power sleep mode using the onboard supervisory microcontroller. The microcontroller is able to power off the remainder of the board while only drawing a few mW. It is effectively a shutdown/startup cycle for U-Boot and Linux to continue running your application.

The TS-7100-Z can wake two ways:

  • Timer – A number of milliseconds are specified for a sleep. 1000 ms minimum to 4294967295 ms (49.7 days) maximum.
  • TOUCH_IRQ# – Touching the LCD display (if equipped).

The sleep mode can be entered by calling silabs sleep 60000 to sleep for 60 seconds, but this should never be called directly from a Linux shell prompt (from a U-Boot prompt is OK). This would be equivalent to disconnecting power while booted – irrespective of whether supercaps are enabled – which can cause data loss.

The Debian distribution uses systemd to manage shutdown. When systemd shuts down, it will call all executables in /lib/systemd/system-shutdown/. As an example, here is how to create a script named silabs-sleep in said directory:

cat > /lib/systemd/system-shutdown/silabs-sleep <<EOF

silabs sleep 60000
chmod a+x /lib/systemd/system-shutdown/silabs-sleep

Now the board will sleep immediately following a shutdown. For example:

shutdown -h now

Within approximately 60 seconds after shutting down, the TS-7100 automatically will then power back up and boot.

During sleep mode, it is safe to disconnect power. In general, if power is removed and restored while asleep, the unit will boot up again immediately, as the microcontroller has lost power and would undergo a reset. Note, however, that if external power is removed but the supercapacitors are enabled and sufficiently charged to keep the microcontroller powered, re-applying power will not boot the device up, as the microcontroller is still in sleep mode. The system will boot only upon satisfying a sleep wakeup condition – or upon applying power after waiting sufficient time for the supercaps to discharge. Depending on the post-power-loss behavior you require, enable and charge the supercaps – or disable them – prior to putting the board to sleep.


See the kernel spidev documentation for more information on interfacing with the SPI peripherals.

TS-SILO Supercapacitors

The TS-7100-Z has an option to add two 2.7 V 25 F supercapacitors. These two SuperCaps can provide up to 20 seconds of power hold time automatically if the external power input is removed. The Power Fail input signal (see the DIO Section) can be used to determine if the exterior power has been removed or fallen below a valid input level. Using this signal, a proper shutdown can be issued to ensure that all data is flushed from cache to disk, and all disks are unmounted properly.

SILO charging and discharging is managed transparently by the supervisory microcontroller. The silabs command, available both in U-Boot and Debian, may be used to set the current and default behavior. Use silabs scaps default enable or silabs scaps default disable to do as described. This latter mode (the factory default) is very useful for development to allow for proper power-off conditions without having to wait for the SuperCaps to discharge. Regardless of the charge level, the supervisory microcontroller will not allow the TS-7100 to power up the CPU until the input power level is valid. If the system shuts-down safely due to a power failure, it will remain in a powered off state until external power is re-applied.

By default, systemd(1) loads tssilomon.service when Debian starts up. The service monitors the Power Fail pin and attempts a graceful shutdown if the power input has failed. This service runs the script /usr/local/bin/tssilomon to perform the monitoring.

Additionally, U-Boot can delay booting until the SuperCaps are charged to a certain percentage, and optionally print the current percentage once per second. These are controlled with the environment variables chrg_pct and chrg_verb By setting chrg_pct to anything other than 0 (0 means do not wait, which is the default behavior), booting will be delayed until that percentage is reached. Setting chrg_verb environment variable to 1 will enable the verbose printing of the current percentage every second. Note that the SuperCaps may be at "0%" for a large period of time, this is due to the charge level being below a voltage that can sustain the TS-7100. See the U-Boot section for information on setting environment variables.

A recommended value is 100%. This value was chosen because it can ensure the system is powered long enough to boot up and safely shut down (and provide an additional 8 s of power) if power is immediately cut once booting has started. Please note that this only applies to the default stock image; any further changes to the TS-7100 hardware or software, such as connecting powered devices like USB or adding additional applications may cause the recommended value to not sustain the TS-7180 until a safe shutdown is completed. The time it takes to reach 100% charge will vary depending on the current charge of the SuperCaps. On average, it will take about 20 seconds to charge the SuperCaps to 100%; this is assuming the SuperCaps have very recently fallen below the minimum threshold voltage.

Note: We strongly recommend disabling supercaps during development, because power-cycling does not take place as expected for as long as they are enabled and remain sufficiently charged.


The TS-7100-Z provides three general-purpose UARTs as well as UARTs dedicated to the console, Bluetooth and the NimbeLink socket:

Component Compatibility Device UART /dev Connection TX / + pin RX / - pin
i.MX6UL USB via Silabs UART1 ttymxc0 Micro-USB Console
i.MX6UL RS-232 UART2 ttymxc1 CN32 Terminal Block 1 3
i.MX6UL 3.3 V UART3 ttymxc2 Bluetooth N/A
i.MX6UL 3.3 V UART4 ttymxc3 NimbeLink (CN16) 3 2
i.MX6UL RS-232 UART5 ttymxc4 CN32 Terminal Block 5 7
FPGA RS-485 ttyS0 CN32 Terminal Block 29 31


RS-485 is implemented via a UART interface inside of the FPGA. This device handles automatic TXEN assertion and de-assertion for half-duplex RS-485 communication. See the UARTs section for the location of the RS-485 port.

USB Controller

The i.MX6ul provides two USB hosts supporting USB 2.0 (480 Mbit/s). Typically this is interfaced with by using Linux drivers, but low level USB communication is possible using libusb.

Note: When the XBee/NimbeLink socket is enabled, only the lower USB port is available.


The TS-7100 implements a WDT inside the supervisory microcontroller. A standard kernel WDT driver is in place that manages the WDT via the I2C bus. The WDT requires a userspace feeding system as the kernel has no provisions for self-feeding. Our stock distribution uses the 'watchdog' utility to check system health, set feed length, and perform feeds. Any arbitrary timeout value between 10 ms through 42949672.95 seconds is possible, with a resolution of 10 ms. Setting a timeout of 0 and issuing a feed will disable the WDT in hardware.

At power-on, the WDT in the microcontroller is live and running. This means that any failures in the boot process will cause a reboot and another attempt. From there, feeds must be manually done in U-Boot or the system booted to Linux within the default 60 second timeout. Once the kernel initializes the WDT driver, it will change the timeout and issue a single feed (default 5 minutes). Userspace must be fully booted and able to take over feeding within this time frame.

The default Linux timeout of 5 minutes was designed to accommodate very slow external I/O. For example, performing an 'fsck' on an external HDD of large sizes via USB mass storage interface, may take a number of minutes worst case. This timeout can be adjusted via the FDT file for the TS-7100. Setting this timeout to 0 will cause the WDT to be disabled in hardware as soon as the kernel is started.

The kernel driver supports the "Magic Close" feature of the WDT. This means that a 'V' character must be fed in to the watchdog file before the file is closed in order to disable the WDT. If this does not happen then the WDT is not stopped and it will continue it's countdown. This is the default behavior of our stock kernel.

Additionally, if the kernel is compiled with CONFIG_WATCHDOG_NOWAYOUT then the WDT can never be stopped once it is started at boot. This is not enabled by default in our stock kernel

See the Linux WDT API documentation for more information.


This board uses an ATWILC3000-MR110CA IEEE 802.11 b/g/n Link Controller Module With Integrated Bluetooth® 4.0. Linux provides support for this module using the wilc3000 driver.

Summary features:

  • IEEE 802.11 b/g/n RF/PHY/MAC SOC
  • IEEE 802.11 b/g/n (1x1) for up to 72 Mbps PHY rate
  • Single spatial stream in 2.4GHz ISM band
  • Integrated PA and T/R Switch Integrated Chip Antenna
  • Superior Sensitivity and Range via advanced PHY signal processing
  • Advanced Equalization and Channel Estimation
  • Advanced Carrier and Timing Synchronization
  • Wi-Fi Direct and Soft-AP support
  • Supports IEEE 802.11 WEP, WPA, and WPA2 Security
  • Supports China WAPI security
  • Operating temperature range of -40°C to +85°C


Note: This section is incomplete at this time.

Power Specifications

The TS-7100-Z accepts a range of voltages from 8 V to 48 V DC.

Power Consumption

TS-SILO SuperCaps

External Interfaces

Battery Connector

TS-7100 Battery Connector

CN32 Terminal Block

The TS-7100 features a 2x16 IO header accompanied by a removable terminal block with spring clamps. This terminal block supports wire thicknesses in the range AWG 24-16. Its manufacturer is On Shore (OSTNL321003),

Important note: All connector descriptions assume that the board is sitting "right side up" on a lab bench. When looking at the LCD of a TS-7100's enclosure, the top of the board within actually faces away. In that sense, the board is "upside-down" relative to the connector shown in this manual. The photo on the right illustrates the connector's pins oriented like the diagram below on the left. In other words, remember that for the board inside to "face upward", the enclosure must rest with the LCD facing down. For a TS-7100 in its enclosure, a connector pin may be most convenient to locate by referring to the physical label or the diagram on the splash screen. Unlike the diagrams here, those are drawn with the assumption that the LCD is facing up.

To insert or remove a wire to an individual terminal block pin, press and hold in the orange tab near the pin.

To remove the entire terminal block from the connector, press down the orange tabs on both sides. The tabs will flip back up after re-inserting the block.

TS-7100 IO Terminal Block.png TS-7100 IO Terminal Block Photo.jpg

Pin Schematic Name Description
1 TXD_1_232 ttymxc1 RS-232 TXD
2 RELAY_1_NO Relay 1 Normally Open
3 RXD_1_232 ttymxc1 RS-232 RXD
4 RELAY_1_NC Relay 1 Normally Closed
5 TXD_2_232 ttymxc4 RS-232 TXD
6 RELAY_1_COM Relay 1 Common
7 RXD_2_232 ttymxc4 RS-232 RXD
8 RELAY_2_NO Relay 2 Normally Open
9 DIG_IN_1_STC GPIO Bank 5 IO 6
10 RELAY_2_NC Relay 2 Normally Closed
11 DIG_IN_2_STC GPIO Bank 5 IO 7
12 RELAY_2_COM Relay 2 Common
13 DIG_IN_3_STC GPIO Bank 5 IO 8
14 DIO_1_STC Output Bank 5 IO 0 or Input Bank 5 IO 2
15 IO_CAN_L CAN_L (can0)
16 DIO_2_STC Output Bank 5 IO 1 or Input Bank 5 IO 3
17 IO_CAN_H CAN_H (can0)
18 DIO_3_STC Output Bank 6 IO 13 or Input Bank 5 IO 4
19 AN_4_STC ADC #1 input 0
20 GND
21 AN_3_STC ADC #1 input 9
22 GND
23 AN_2_STC ADC #1 input 8
24 GND
25 AN_1_STC ADC #1 input 5
26 GND
27 HS_SW_OUTPUT AN_0 or High Side Switch Bank 5 IO 15
28 GND
29 IO_RS485_PLUS ttyS0 RS-485+
30 GND
31 IO_RS485_MINUS ttyS0 RS-485-
32 GND

Ethernet Ports

The Ethernet jacks are located on the TS-7100-Z IO board. See elsewhere in this manual for further details on the Ethernet devices and network configuration.

TS-7100 Ethernets.jpg

The enclosure's end cap labels ethernet@20b4000 ("ETH0" in the diagram above) as "ETH B", and ethernet@2188000 ("ETH1") as "ETH A".

CN16 XBee/Nimbelink Socket

CN16 is a 2mm pitch, 2x10 header which supports XBEE form factor modules. These include Nimbelink and Digi cell modems, Zigbee, Digi mesh, and other third party radios.

Pin Description
11 GND
12 /dev/ttymxc3 CTS
13 NC
14 3.3V
15 GND
16 GND
17 NC
18 NC
19 NC
Pin Description
10 GND
8 USB-
7 USB+
6 4.7V
5 NC
3 /dev/ttymxc3 TXD
2 /dev/ttymxc3 RXD
1 NIMBEL_PWR (3.3V or 4V)

While pin 1 commonly lines up with the antennas on the modems, the pin 1 orientation should be verified in your modem's datasheet.

XBEE-brand modules use 3.3V and require USB to be disabled:

# Enable 3.3V
gpioset 7 6=0

# Turn off USB
gpioset 7 9=0

# Access /dev/ttymxc3

For other types of modules, this header can provide 3.3V or 4V, as many cell radios require higher voltage. Check the datasheet of your module before turning on any power to this header. Most cell modems require 4V, while most other radios require 3.3V.

Nimbelink modules have modem-specific methods of powering on, usage, and powering off. Verify in the datasheet of the modem appropriate for your cell network to determine if the module uses USB. If not, verify the expected serial baud rate and settings.

# For modules wanting 4V:
gpioset 7 6=1

# For modules wanting 3.3V:
#gpioset 7 6=0

# To turn off power on this pin, configure NIMBEL_PWR an input:
# gpioget 7 6

# If your modem supports USB, this must be enabled,
# disabling the upper external USB port and enabling
# the modem's.
gpioset 7 9=1

# Some modems require NIM_PWR_ON to be "pressed" before they
# turn on. WARNING: If the modem is already on, this same
# sequence may turn it off.
#gpioset 7 8=1
#sleep 1
#gpioset 7 8=0

If your device doesn't turn on or off as expected, be sure to consult the manual for it. There are often device-specific procedures for powering on and sometimes even custom AT command sequences needed in order to safely power off.

Note: Some Nimbelink cell modems have a long startup and may not show up on USB for many seconds.

Serial TTY-based modems can be tested with picocom

# Verify the baud rate for your specific modem
picocom -b 921600 /dev/ttymxc3

With picocom type AT and press enter and it should return "OK". Press Ctrl+a x to close picocom.

Power Terminal Block

The TS-7100 uses a 2 pin removable terminal block. The mating connector from On Shore Technologies OSTTJ025102 is included with the board.

The 2 pin terminal block supports 8-48VDC input. A typical power supply will provide 1A at 12V. More details can be found in the #Power Consumption section.

Pin Description
1 (Left) 8-48VDC
2 (Right) GND
TS-7100 Power Connector.png

USB Ports

The TS-7100-Z offers two USB 2.0 type A host ports. See the USB Controller section for more details.

TS-7100 Ethernets.jpg

The bottom (USB1) port is always available on the USB Header. The top port (USB2) is switchable, and instead can be connected to the USB pins of an installed XBee device or NimbeLink modem inserted in to the CN16 socket. By default USB is connected to the top USB type A port instead of the Nimbelink Header.

# Enable top USB port (default):
gpioset 7 9=0

# Move USB to Nimbelink/XBEE Header
gpioset 7 9=1

Power to the host ports can be controlled with the LED subsystem under the LED device:

# USB off:
echo 0 > /sys/class/leds/en-usb-5v/brightness

# USB On:
echo 1 > /sys/class/leds/en-usb-5v/brightness

See the DIO section of the manual for more information on this. The USB A host port stack can provide 1 A total power output shared between the two ports.

Revisions and Changes

Note: This section is incomplete at this time.

FPGA Changelog

Microcontroller Changelog

PCB Revisions

Software Images

Debian Changelog

See our Debian release archive for all released images, including the latest for each supported Debian version.

Image Changes
ts7100-debian-stretch-20191010.tar.xz Initial release
  • Debian 10.6.
  • Initial support for Rev A hardware.

Debian 10.11


The U-Boot build date can be viewed as the first line of output when the unit is powered on. For example:

U-Boot 2016.03-00408-gd450758c91 (Oct 10 2019 - 11:59:08 -0700)

CPU:   Freescale i.MX6UL rev1.2 at 396 MHz

Revision Changes
U-Boot 2016.03-00408-gd450758c91 (Oct 10 2019 - 11:59:08 -0700) Initial prototype release for board revs P1 and P2.
U-Boot 2020.01-40236-g8b6b7f2c30 (Mar 18 2022 - 10:32:35 -0700) SPL and support for rev A boards.
  • distroboot fixes.
  • production-related fixes.

Product Notes

FCC Advisory

This equipment generates, uses, and can radiate radio frequency energy and if not installed and used properly (that is, in strict accordance with the manufacturer's instructions), may cause interference to radio and television reception. It has been type tested and found to comply with the limits for a Class A digital device in accordance with the specifications in Part 15 of FCC Rules, which are designed to provide reasonable protection against such interference when operated in a commercial environment. Operation of this equipment in a residential area is likely to cause interference, in which case the owner will be required to correct the interference at his own expense.

If this equipment does cause interference, which can be determined by turning the unit on and off, the user is encouraged to try the following measures to correct the interference:

Reorient the receiving antenna. Relocate the unit with respect to the receiver. Plug the unit into a different outlet so that the unit and receiver are on different branch circuits. Ensure that mounting screws and connector attachment screws are tightly secured. Ensure that good quality, shielded, and grounded cables are used for all data communications. If necessary, the user should consult the dealer or an experienced radio/television technician for additional suggestions. The following booklets prepared by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) may also prove helpful:

How to Identify and Resolve Radio-TV Interference Problems (Stock No. 004-000-000345-4) Interface Handbook (Stock No. 004-000-004505-7) These booklets may be purchased from the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC 20402.

Limited Warranty

See our Terms and Conditions for more details.

WARNING: Writing ANY of the CPU's One-Time Programmable registers will immediately void ALL of our return policies and replacement warranties. This includes but is not limited to: the 45-day full money back evaluation period; any returns outside of the 45-day evaluation period; warranty returns within the 1 year warranty period that would require SBC replacement. Our 1 year limited warranty still applies, however it is at our discretion to decide if the SBC can be repaired, no warranty replacements will be provided if the OTP registers have been written.

WARNING: Setting any of the eMMC's write-once registers (e.g. enabling enhanced area and/or write reliability) will immediately void ALL of our return policies and replacement warranties. This includes but is not limited to: the 45-day full money back evaluation period; any returns outside of the 45-day evaluation period; warranty returns within the 1 year warranty period that would require SBC replacement. Our 1 year limited warranty still applies, however it is at our discretion to decide if the SBC can be repaired, no warranty replacements will be provided if the OTP registers have been written.


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